Mr. Peabody and Sherman: Travel in Time with a Genius Dog and Fun Kid
When in Manila, my friend got to travel in time with Mr. Peabody and Sherman. I was out on a trip during the press screening, and I sadly didn’t get to join the adventure.
Now, here is his story and review:
In the late 1950s, there was a show called The Rocky and Bullwinkle Show which, in turn, sandwiched inside a series of 5-minute cartoon episodes called Peabody’s Improbable History. This, of course, starred the world-genius and multi-talented beagle Mr. Peabody and his adopted son Sherman, as they travel back in time using Mr. Peabody’s WABAC machine (pronounced exactly like ‘way back’).
During the two’s time-travels, something would always go horribly wrong and Mr. Peabody would end up saving the day, before delivering a historically-themed pun. Needless to say, Dreamworks’ Mr. Peabody and Sherman was based on this series-within-a-show cartoon.
This adaptation still upholds the same premise, only this time, it features father and son traveling consecutively to different time periods. The whole adventure is also held together by a domino-effect story arc about Sherman trying to adjust to school despite his unusual background and far superior aptitude, and Mr. Peabody rising up to the challenges to his parental rights/custody vis-à-vis a nosy social worker.
I still haven’t decided if Mr. Peabody and Sherman was witty or punny (pun intended of course). But whichever the case, I found the movie especially delightful and fun –being a self-confessed brainiac myself. The historically-referenced jokes and yes, the puns, were something I feel even adults would recognize and laugh out to. The formula works because the film does not take itself too seriously, as is the usual tendency for semi-educational themes. I find that when you craft a story that heavily touches upon history, a simple retelling of textbook content will not serve the purposes of entertainment, but brings up, rather, random memories of classroom boredom. The movie avoids this with success, relying on what else, but Mr. Peabody’s Improbable versions of History, to deliver that comedic punch.
It should come as no surprise that this film is recommended to young and old alike, who do not mind their history lessons shaken up a little –for excitement of course. I suggest that viewers take the history from this film with a grain of salt and let their own beloved textbook versions take a backseat for a while. It’s supposed to be a movie house after all, not a classroom.
Movie Review by Ralph Jacob
Mr. Peabody and Sherman is directed by Rob Minkoff (“The Lion King,” “Stuart Little”). Voice cast also includes Stephen Colbert, Leslie Mann, Patrick Warburton, Stanley Tucci, Allison Janney, Mel Brooks, Lake Bell, Zach Callison and Dennis Haysbert.
Mr. Peabody and Sherman is now showing in Philippine cinemas
A Dream Works Animation from 20th Century Fox distributed by Warner Bros.